Beardie Care Sheet

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Beardie Care Sheet

Postby AllanonsWrath » Tue Dec 06, 2011 7:13 am

[TOPIC AUTO-LOCKED DUE TO INACTIVITY]

Let me start by saying, "I know there are a lot of good care sheets on the web currently." I know there are, but this was mainly to check my own knowledge and to see if I could help some other new owners with a simple care sheet. Thanks to the whole community for the information on this website. I was able to learn alot and am hoping that this care sheet will help other people as well. Without further ado:

Bearded Dragon General Care
Housing:
Baby dragons (under 10 inches) can be housed in a 20gal long aquarium. However, they grow quickly, so you may consider purchasing a 40gal breeder aquarium instead. Adult dragons should be housed in a minimum of 40 gallon breeder aquarium.
Lighting:
Lighting is a very important part of your dragon’s health. Beardies require 12 – 14 hours of “daylight”. Recommended is the ReptiSun 10.0 fluorescent long tubes. These bulbs should stretch at least 1/3 of the tank, most prefer them to stretch the length of the enclosure though. Make sure the UV light is not placed on top of glass or screen as they can block the UV rays. Your bearded should be able to get within 6 – 8 inches of the UV light.
These can help with hanging UVB lights as well: [url=http://www.beardeddragons.co/beardeddragon/index.php?route=product/product&path=68&product_id=90
]Hangers[/url]
Heating and Temps:
Heating equipment should include a basking light (can be normal household bulbs or Halogen lights) and another light or CHE to keep the ambient temperature up in the enclosure at night.
Basking Temps should be 95 – 100 for adults and 100 – 110 for juveniles.
The “cool” side of the enclosure should be around 85 during the day but can fall as low as 65 at night.
Using a CHE at night will help keep temperatures up to proper levels.
Substrates:
Acceptable substrates include: paper towels, newspaper, butcher paper, reptile carpet, ceramic tile, etc. Do NOT use any substrates that your bearded may be able to swallow (I.E. Sand, crushed walnut, shavings, etc.) most substrates of this type can cause impaction and be very uncomfortable / painful for your bearded.
Sand Warning
Feeding and Diet:
Beardies eat both plant and animal matter, and need both to have a healthy diet. You should never feed your bearded anything larger than the space between their eyes, this can be an impaction hazard.
Baby and young beardies should be fed about three times a day. Offer them as many crickets as they will eat within a 5 – 10 minute time frame. You may also leave a salad in your young beardies cage, spray it with some water and possibly sprinkle it with a multivitamin / calcium dust.
Older bearded (sub-adult to adult) only need to be fed prey items once a day. Basically switching their diet from 75% protein (live feeders) and 25% greens to 75% greens and 25% protein.
Do NOT feed your bearded anything you catch in your yard or outside. Any wild caught insects will most likely be carrying parasites that can be transferred to your bearded. Pet store crickets, roaches or worms should be fed to avoid parasite infections.
Live prey should be dusted with calcium powder at least 4 – 5 times a week. You should also dust on non-calcium days with a multivitamin supplement at least 1 – 2 times a week.
Do not leave prey items in the enclosure with your dragon. Any uneaten prey should be removed in order to keep a clean enclosure and to not stress your dragon.
Many fruits and vegetables can be given to your dragon, variety is a good thing for their diets.
Following the chart listed at the link below is a good way to know what to feed your dragon.
Nutritonal Chart
Water and Bathing:
Most dragons will only drink water from a dish when they are dehydrated, thus most people will only include a small water dish inside the enclosure. Misting is not an acceptable method for hydrating your dragon, they will not absorb enough water this way to stay hydrated.
Bathing your bearded at least 1 – 3 times a week will help keep them hydrated. It will also aid in shedding. The water should be warm on your wrist, do not get the water too hot. Also, the water should only come to about the middle of the dragon’s chest.
Beardies will often defecate in the bath, this is normal behavior. If this happens, remove your dragon and rinse and refill the tub. Because of this, it is a good idea to disinfect your tub after every bath.
Disinfecting:
Disinfecting can be done in any number of ways. Using a mixture of bleach and water is one of the simplest and easiest ways to disinfect. Use a mixture of about ¼ Bleach and ¾ Water. You can use a spray bottle for easier application or use a steamer as well. You will want to let the mixture sit on the tank for at least 10 – 15 minutes for the bleach to do its work. After that, you can take a washrag or dish towel and wipe down every surface. Make sure to get any old food or feces removed. If you do use bleach or any other harmful chemical, you will want to rinse the enclosure thoroughly. You will not want to smell the chemical any more.
Owner’s Hygiene:
Wash your hands before and after handling your bearded dragon. Dragons carry small amounts of salmonella, so be sure to wash your hands. You will want to clean / disinfect any surfaces your dragon has come into contact with while out of their enclosure as well. (Especially if you have small children) Most reptiles carry some degree of salmonella or other things. It is always better to be safe than sorry.
Concerns about your dragon’s health:
Major items to check for in spotting an illness in your dragon:
1. Wrinkles in the skin/scales – often a sign of dehydration
2. Unsteady or wobbly on their feet – could be a sign of many illnesses
3. Head tilting or shaking – could be a sign of illness or neurological problems
4. Lethargic dragon – another sign of illness
5. Drop in appetite or not eating – another sign of illness
These are the most common signs of dragons not feeling well. Some are also symptoms of Brumation. A very good article on Brumation is located here: Brumation
Brumation most commonly occurs around the winter, at an age of 1yr old. However, some dragons have been known to brumate for the rest of their lives around winter.

Financial Considerations
USA Start-Up Costs:
40 gallon breeder tank - $40 on sale at PetCo, costs more when not on sale
Flourescent fixture for UVB Bulb - $10 or more
Flourescent UVB - ReptiSun 10.0 or Arcadia 12% D3 - $25 and up
Basking bulb - Price varies by size and type. Can be anywhere from $5 - $50
Basking fixture - Ceramic Dome - ~ $20
Substrate - $5 - $25
2 Digi thermometers - $6 - $20 each
Basking cave and hides - $15 - $50
Feeders for the first WEEK - depends on where and what you order - $20 - $200

UK Start-Up Costs (Thank You MissT)
36x18x21 viv (flatpack)- £66 (seapets)
Flourescent fixture for bulb - £15+
Flourescent UVB - Arcadia 12% D3 - £15+
Basking bulb - Price varies - approx £3 for 2 pack of spotlamps in tesco.
Substrate - £5 +
Digi thermometers - ebay - £2+
Basking caves and hides - check out the small animals sections of pet stores/online pet stores - often cheaper than reptile products
Feeding dishes - reptile dishes - £5+ or just use cat food dishes - appox 75p
Feeders for the first week - £14+ (livefoodsdirect)
Exo-Terra calcium and vitamin supplements - approx £3 each

Canadian Start-Up Costs (Thank You bltkpo)
Exo Terra Large Glass Terrarium (36 x 18 x 19) - $200 (New) .. Found one online (kijiji aka craigslist) for $90
Flourescent fixture for bulb - $30+ (haven't looked at Walmart for an under-the-counter fixture)
Flourescent UVB - Repti-Sun 10.0 Tube - $30
Basking bulb - Price varies - $15 name brand, $5 no name brand.
Substrate - Tile - $11
Digi thermometers - ZooMed - $15
Basking caves and hides - $10 - $30 dependant on size/model.
Feeding dishes - $15
Feeders for the first week - $24 (300 cricks @ $8/100)
Repashy supplements (calc and vit) - $10


*** These are rough estimates, as it really depends on what you buy and where you buy it! I will work on an example set up for newcomers that will be adequate housing and try to keep it as fairly cheap as possible. If anyone else would like to do something similar, we could use information on an Australian set up as well. ~Thanks ***

Disclaimer and Thanks:
I am not a vet, merely a keeper. Most of the things I have learned have been right here on http://www.beardeddragon.org/
I thank the community for answering questions and being very helpful in general to all of the new owners.
Last edited by AllanonsWrath on Wed Mar 07, 2012 1:00 pm, edited 13 times in total.
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby BadCon » Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:08 pm

Not to hijack, but I figured I'd post this. I made this some months back so I could hand them out at the Petco Reptile Rally. Its by no means complete, just something to give people a general idea of bearded dragon care. Its a word document and I have a DL link if anyone's interested in printing it out for a potential beardy owner.
Picture preview:
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(full size link) http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd27 ... sheet2.png
I suck at speling!
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AllanonsWrath » Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:09 pm

That's quite alright, I cant see the picture since I'm still at work. But, I dont mind if anyone else wants to post care sheets or "cheat sheets" they may have made to help the community out. Thanks!
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AllanonsWrath » Tue Dec 13, 2011 10:37 am

****Insert Shameless Bump Here****

Anyone else have anything to add to these? Any more care guides? Mini Guides? Cheat Sheets? I'm sure we can get a good informational thread going here!
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AtlasStrike » Tue Dec 13, 2011 12:01 pm

I think there should be a "Financial Considerations" section which talks about the costs of caring for beardies including setup, uvb bulb replacement, monthly energy costs, feeders, etc. I feel like a lot of people don't realize that these guys are more expensive to feed and maintain than other household pets like dogs and cats.
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AllanonsWrath » Tue Dec 13, 2011 12:04 pm

That is a very good idea, I will try and work out an "average" or "normal" feeding retinue and costs for power / food / etc... if anyone would like to feed some data to me via PM that is fine as well. I will keep the information to myself and use it only for the purposes of compiling an average cost. I will give my average costs as soon as I compile the data.
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AllanonsWrath » Wed Feb 08, 2012 12:51 pm

*Bump*

Still working up a rough financial consideration page.
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby Snarf » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:26 pm

I don't know if this helps at all but I know I'm generally spending around £40 (according to xe.com roughly $64) on food and electric for them. Then on occasion around £45-50 when topping up on Nutrobal and replacing lights etc.
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AllanonsWrath » Thu Feb 09, 2012 12:14 pm

Updated with a rough start up estimate on costs. Will look into an example set up for US citizens. Anyone from Canada, Europe, and Australia like to help with respective set-ups?
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AllanonsWrath » Wed Feb 22, 2012 1:15 pm

Rquesting a sticky for this thread please. Am really working to keep this up to date and provide good information.
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby saleen89559 » Wed Feb 22, 2012 1:40 pm

Impressive posts. I intend to subscribe to this and print off a finished product to give to anyone i know wanting a beardie.
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby cybercat » Wed Feb 22, 2012 2:09 pm

Most is OK but fixture for UVB is more like $30 and up. No UVB should be on top of glass as it blocks it totally. Also the high watt bulbs do not need to be inside of tank and can be on top of screen without any problem. Feeding for baby should be greens in morning live food other feedings and you are looking at 20 plus live a feeding or more depent on age of baby in 15 mins. Remember ratio is 80% live and 20% veggi first year. After first year it is 80% veggi 20% live. Adults eat live food once or twice a week for they do not need the protien or calcium unless they are breeding or going into or comeing out burmation. Not all live food needs to be dusted either. Worm like phoenic, calci, butter do not need dusting. Crickets do so do roaches and supperworm, wax or mealworms. Supperworms should not be feed to babies if larger than 1/2" that is the small size. Large can be fed to a BD that is 16 inches long.
Tamara
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3 snakes, 1alb red rat Red, 1 brazilain rainbow boa Savan and 1 normal red rat Lucky
1 male Rainbow Tiger Beared Dragon. Helios
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AllanonsWrath » Thu Feb 23, 2012 6:10 am

cybercat wrote:Most is OK but fixture for UVB is more like $30 and up. No UVB should be on top of glass as it blocks it totally. Also the high watt bulbs do not need to be inside of tank and can be on top of screen without any problem. Feeding for baby should be greens in morning live food other feedings and you are looking at 20 plus live a feeding or more depent on age of baby in 15 mins. Remember ratio is 80% live and 20% veggi first year. After first year it is 80% veggi 20% live. Adults eat live food once or twice a week for they do not need the protien or calcium unless they are breeding or going into or comeing out burmation. Not all live food needs to be dusted either. Worm like phoenic, calci, butter do not need dusting. Crickets do so do roaches and supperworm, wax or mealworms. Supperworms should not be feed to babies if larger than 1/2" that is the small size. Large can be fed to a BD that is 16 inches long.


http://www.walmart.com/ip/Lights-of-Ame ... e/16879945 < $12 at my local Walmart.
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby cybercat » Thu Feb 23, 2012 8:56 am

That is not a UVB bulb or fixture. This would be correct type for a UVB http://lightyourreptiles.com/22t5hofihou.html. That is the 22 inch. Bulb would be same price. The correct UVb is a 5T type and requires a special fixture. You can not buy them from Walmart.
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3 snakes, 1alb red rat Red, 1 brazilain rainbow boa Savan and 1 normal red rat Lucky
1 male Rainbow Tiger Beared Dragon. Helios
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Re: Beardie Care

Postby AllanonsWrath » Thu Feb 23, 2012 9:00 am

That fixture is fine for a T8 ReptiSun 10.0 It's a T8 fixture. You do not need to buy the really expensive fixtures from reptile supply stores, you're wasting money if you do.
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